House Plants/jade plant


hello Will,
I have a very old jade indoor tree and the last year or so I notice that it is loosing alot of the jade off the tree. I try not to over water, however, every now and then I find a whole branch on the floor and notice the tree is thinning.
This was my son's plant given to me and I don't want to have to throw it away.  
What can I do?

Thank You, Mary

Hi Mary,

You haven't provided any information about how long you have had your Jade, the light that it receives and your watering routine, all of which have important effects on Jade Plants. So, I will provide some general, basic care instructions for Jade Plants and let you determine where you may have gone astray.

First, let me say that a very common problem with very old Jades is lack of pruning. Stems grow ever longer and eventually the weight will cause the stems to break. Jades should be pruned back by about a third at least annually to keep them looking compact and healthy.

Jades must be kept within a few feet of a sunny window. They are not low light plants. The window must be completely uncovered throughout the daylight hours. Without enough light, the plant will gradually thin, die bask and deteriorate.

Jades have small, fine root systems and never need repotting. Moving them to pots that are too large will cause the fragile roots to slowly rot as the soil stays moist for too long.

When properly potted, Jades should be watered only when the top quarter of the soil feels quite dry. Make sure the pot has drain holes for excess water to escape. Using drainage material in the bottom of the pot instead of a drain hole is a recipe for failure.

In sum, focus on providing lots of natural light, allowing the soil to dry out properly and pruning back your Jade regularly. That should solve your Jade Plant problems.

I have written detailed articles on repotting, pruning and on Jade Plant care that I will email for free to you (or anyone else) who emails a request to me at I have also written an indoor plant care book in a PDF format that I can sell you if you contact me at my email address.

Please let me know if any of this is unclear or if you have any additional questions.

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Will Creed


I am the only expert in this category with professional hands-on experience and knowledge of all indoor plants. I can answer questions regarding light, water, fertilizer, repotting, pruning and humidity and temperature requirements. I can identify plant pests and provide information on safe, effective treatments. My answers are based on 35 years of professional experience and scientific research and are clear and easy to understand. I do NOT use search engines to find answers to your questions. If you read my previous posts here, you will get a good idea as to how thorough and professional my answers are.


I have over 35 years of professional indoor landscaping experience caring for plants in homes, offices, building lobbies, stores, restaurants, and other adverse environments. I have written extensively on the care of indoor plants, including a 260 page book. My specialties include Ficus trees, low light plants, repotting, pest control, and re-blooming holiday plants. Be sure to check my ratings and nominations to learn why I am the top-rated indoor plant expert. I am the only House Plant expert consistently ranked in the AllExperts Top 20.

BA, Amherst College

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